Archives For William Bohl

MVP

The Wolves had four players in the Rising Stars Game on Friday night. Zach LaVine, Shabazz Muhammad and the USA squad fell 121-112 to the World team, led by Gorgui Dieng and Andrew Wiggins, who took home MVP honors following his electrifying six dunk performance. Wiggins and LaVine tied for the game high in points (22 apiece), Dieng had 14 and Muhammad had 10. Continue Reading…

MOTOWNPEK

Photo credit: Raj Mehta

Ain’t nothin’ holdin’ me back nothin’
I’ll keep right on, right on truckin’
Ain’t nothin’ holdin’ me back nothin’
I’ll keep right on, right on truckin’

– Eddie Kendricks, Keep on Truckin’

Steph Curry and Kevin Durant launching heat check threes like trebuchets of fire is fun to watch. LeBron James and Russell Westbrook barrelling towards the rim on fastbreaks, unstoppable freight trains of power and agility, is fun to watch. Anthony Davis and Giannis Antetokounmpo catching impossible lobs with go-go-gadget arms is fun to watch. Rudy Gobert and DeAndre Jordan meandering over from the weakside, lurking, before springing up to swat away a shot attempt with authority is fun to watch. Kyrie Irving and Chris Paul putting the ball on a string and tripping up helpless defenders is fun to watch.

I don’t know how much fun the casual fan has watching Nikola Pekovic play, but hell if it isn’t fun for me. He’s not any of those guys above; he’s a below the basket center who is going to feed you a steady diet of seal, turn, catch, post move, shovel or hook shot. I imagine as a competitor, there’d have to be something satisfying about everyone on the floor knowing exactly what you’re going to do and physically imposing your will to do it anyway. Continue Reading…

RUBIO

While Ricky Rubio was gone – 87 days, 42 games – the Wolves went 6-36, sporting the 4th-worst offense and worst defense (by more than 3 points per 100 possessions) in the NBA over that stretch. There were plenty of injuries to go around and all of them contributed to the slide, but Rubio’s absence was both the longest and most critical.

Without him, Mo Williams was thrust into a starting role, the extremely raw Zach LaVine had to play minutes he wasn’t ready for, Corey Brewer and Robbie Hummel had to make out of position cameos at the point, and a recent D-Leaguer on a 10-day contract (Lorenzo Brown) had to play all but 5 seconds of Saturday night’s game. Point guard defense was nearly nonexistent. The offensive playbook shrunk to 5-15% of its original size (according to Flip Saunders).

Not only were the Timberwolves much less functional without Rubio, they were also a hell of a lot less FUN. There were moments of joy while Rubio was out, most of them provided by Andrew Wiggins, but also random nights from Zach LaVine (in Staples Center versus the Lakers), Mo Williams (52 points at Indiana) and tough battles against the Suns, Rockets, Pacers and Kings. But the consistent spark was gone.

So it was a sight for sore eyes to see reports that he’d make his return on Monday night in Dallas, and especially so when he was on the floor at the opening tip. The minutes restriction aside (more on that later), Ricky Rubio was back, as was the concept of fun. Continue Reading…

 

Boo Ghost Gif

Tomorrow night, a divisive former Timberwolf returns to the Target Center as a visiting player – and not just Mike Miller, the guy whose curious aversion to pulling the trigger on threes during his lone season in Minnesota vexed many observers (including, famously, Steve Aschburner). It’s that other dude – what’s his name? He sometimes has a beard, sometimes not, used to be a duff but now he’s buff? The All Star? The white guy? Continue Reading…

AViewInWheatRidge

Continue Reading…

CarlisleCarrey

Have you ever noticed Rick Carlisle looks a lot like Jim Carrey?

PepperDirk

Have you ever noticed Dirk Nowitzki looks a lot like Barry Pepper?

rondo-turtle

Have you ever noticed that Rajon Rondo “look like that Turtle Name Franklin on Nick Jr?”

These are distractions.

I’ve kept my spirits pretty high throughout all of the losing this season. I guess I try to look at the big picture, look for bright spots in the development of Andrew Wiggins, Gorgui Dieng and Shabazz Muhammad (when he’s healthy). This is a beautiful game to watch, and it’s important to keep all of it in perspective. But this one got to me – Dallas is an incredible team, and sometimes it didn’t even look like the two squads were trained to play the same sport. Continue Reading…

 

Goran Dragic

I have no idea if this is true or not (I’ll have to ask him about it the next time Phoenix comes to town), but my hypothesis is that a relative of Goran (and Zoran, I guess) Dragic was once attacked and killed by a timberwolf, which is the reason why he seems to bring a little extra every time he laces ‘em up against our poor Timberwolves basketball players. Over his past five games against Minnesota, the 28 year old Slovenia native is averaging 21 points, 4 rebounds and 6 assists on 56% shooting. The Suns are 4-1 in those 5 games, and The Dragon is a big reason why. Continue Reading…

ILLMATIC

Down two points with 5.5 seconds to go, Thad Young rebounded a missed Isaiah Thomas free throw, pushed the ball up the floor, passed it to Chase Budinger, who darted diagonally across center court from left to right, ultimately finding Andrew Wiggins for a good look from the right wing with the clock winding down to zero.

It didn’t go in.

If you have been following the Wolves closely lately, you probably know how often Flip Saunders has repeated something to the effect of “Developing and seeing signs from the young players is nice, but it’s important to have positive reinforcement and win every once in awhile.” So while everyone was ready to talk about Andrew Wiggins’ terrific night – 25 points on 10-of-16 shooting, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals and several big plays down the stretch – Saunders was clearly frustrated with the loss, offering only measured praise for outstanding individual performances and commenting that he’ll spend time going over the events of the night, particularly the final 30 seconds, in his head. The loss stung him. Continue Reading…

JANUS

Contrary to popular belief, the month of January is not named after the Roman deity Janus, the god of beginnings and transitions, who is often depicted with two faces because he’s able to see both the past and the future. It’s a shame, too, because it’d be so poetic. New Year’s Eve and Day, the passage from one year to the next, provides everyone with a chance to look back and look ahead, to evaluate the past year and make resolutions for the next one.

No, January is named after Juno, who was the patron goddess of mouthy, pregnant teenagers or something. Perhaps inspired by this, the Wolves and Kings had plenty of mouthy moments in their New Year’s Day battle at the Target Center. Or it could have been the delicious blend of a Timberwolves team desperate for a win, crappy officiating, a somewhat salty home crowd fighting off the remnants of their hangovers by shouting mean things at the crappy officials, and the beautiful disaster of meddlesome ownership also known as the Sacramento Kings. Continue Reading…

RADU

Yesterday, Shams Charania of RealGM.com reported that the Wolves are in the process of giving Serbian big man Miroslav Raduljica a guaranteed contract for the remainder of the season. While the team’s primary beat writers (Jerry Zgoda and Jon Krawczynski, to name a couple) have yet to confirm the report, Darren Wolfson of 1500ESPN said via Twitter that signs were “pointing to it happening.” Continue Reading…